Have you read Kobi Yamada’s What Do You Do With An Idea? It’s a beautifully illustrated children’s book and I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately as I finally start my world domination with the Hello Namaste! Hindi books! [Pre-order Here]. Just like the little boy in the book who gets followed around with a tiny egg of an idea, it took me a long time to believe that anything should be done about the tiny idea in my head.
When I first wished for a fun way to teach Asha how to count in Hindi, I literally sat down with construction paper and glue, and made something that looked like this:
It was a hit and served its purpose with my kids, and unlike hundreds of such experiments that end once my kids appreciate it, this one seemed a bit different. I had this feeling that said I needed to explore it more and present it a little better. I went through stacks of paper while sketching and drawing ways to share not just numbers but other common words in Hindi.
My little egg was growing right in front of me and I had never been so happy. It felt so good to use my own hands in making something tangible. I started going back to the art store. I started coloring and painting during every free minute. Even when I wasn’t playing with pen and paper, my head was, and that felt truly magical!
Then came an introduction in Adobe Illustrator. It was a way to digitize my illustrations and tinker with them on the computer instead of redrawing ever single change. If there was anything that came really close to killing my idea, it was Adobe Illustrator. It was so hard for me to learn the software that I would literally cry with real tears.
At the time, I had moved my “office” in my closet because the kids would keep getting into my markers, paints, and sketches as they sat on the work desk. It wasn’t uncommon for Devang to be awoken in the middle of the night with me screaming inside my closet because I couldn’t get Illustrator to do what I wanted. It all seems so funny now.
But then I had enough to actually print a book. When it first arrived, I just held it close to my heart before even opening it. The first draft was a simple 6×6 paperback that had all the illustrations in one. I revised it a million times much to the chagrin of the printers in China, before it took on its current form of 4 separate board books (to hold-up to all slobber and love from the kids).
Yamada’s says in his book…
Then, one day something amazing happened. My idea changed right before my very eyes. It spread its wings, took flight, and burst into the sky.
I don’t know how to describe it, but it went from being here to being everywhere. It wasn’t just a part of me anymore… it was now a part of everything.
Today is very special for me, needless to say. My glued on construction art is an actual book with copyrights and ISBNs and Library of Congress cataloging! It has spread its wings for sure! Today I cry happy tears. :)
You can pre-order the books now by clicking on the tiny yellow “buy now” button here. And when you do, a part of you will forever become part of one of my greatest happiness. THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. I hope you love these books as much as I do.
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